Commonwealth Video games: Hayley Simmonds
England’s Hayley Simmonds claimed Commonwealth Games bronze in the women’s time trial and tears of pleasure rapidly adopted the most recent excessive in a outstanding transition.
The 29-year-old stood on the rostrum subsequent to New Zealand’s Linda Villumsen and Australia’s gold medallist Katrin Garfoot, weighing virtually half as a lot as she did when her biking journey started in 2010.
What began as a means of decreasing a peak weight of round 16st 5lbs (104kg) has led to a serious podium, to not point out a drop of round seven stone (45kg).
She is an image of sporting achievement but says she remembers vividly the times the place she would “disguise in saggy garments” to hide her physique.
Simmonds embodied change as – hunched over her bike within the aero-tuck place – she set about including bronze to the silver England’s Harry Tanfield claimed earlier within the males’s time trial.
“I’ve labored onerous,” she tells BBC Sport. “I used to be displaying somebody pictures of me in 2011 and so they did not imagine it was me.”
‘Bye bye malt loaf and pasta’
Life modified for Simmonds after she competed for Cambridge as they claimed the Boat Race in 2009. The 5am rise to row earlier than lectures stopped as her sporting nature was solely sacrificed for examine. Added weight quickly adopted.
“I would not say I bought away with it after I was rowing. Once I did the boat race even at weigh-in day I used to be 86kg (13st 7lbs) I feel,” added Simmonds, who has a PhD in natural chemistry.
“I used to eat a variety of pasta and cheese – which is sweet however not superb.
“I feel vitamin has come a great distance within the time I’ve been in sport. Once I was rowing at school we had a vitamin discuss and I bear in mind being informed that after I’ve been out on an extended row I can principally purchase a complete malt loaf and eat it.
“I assumed nice, I like meals, that sounds good.”
Work with Michelin-starred chef and nutritionist Alan Murchison has helped Simmonds drop all the way down to round 9 stone. Carbohydrate consumption has been drastically decreased in choice for a high-protein, gluten-free weight-reduction plan.
“At one level after I was making an attempt to reduce weight I’d have a high-protein breakfast,” added Simmonds. “In order that may be steak and nuts. I do not do this anymore.
“Initially you possibly can reduce weight fairly rapidly after which it is a sluggish course of. So throughout the interval of losing a few pounds I’ve modified what I’ve carried out.
“I really feel extra assured and higher in myself. I do not fear about sporting saggy garments to cover anymore. Even simply basic vitality ranges have reworked. It is onerous to recollect these instances now.”
‘Lose an oz. achieve a second’
After which in fact there’s biking’s half within the way of life change. Her husband and coach Mark Holt gave her a motorcycle in 2010 earlier than coaching significantly a yr later and attaining a sub 30-minute time trial near her residence.
With a mantra of “lose an oz. achieve a second”, she ultimately gained the British nationwide time trial championships in 2015, the identical yr during which she clocked 19 minutes and 46 seconds for the space.
Three-hour morning rides, or periods on the turbo coach twice a day have melted away mass from her 5ft 5in body. To face subsequent to Simmonds now, you marvel how she truly carried the additional weight.
“As quickly as I began biking and doing night time trials, my aggressive nature took over,” added the Redditch-born athlete.
“There have been instances the place I simply wished to go and eat an enormous cake however I am fortunate I’ve individuals supporting me. If I am going for that slice of cake my husband could say ‘do you really want that?’.
“Anybody can do it. It does not matter in case your aim is a 30-minute time trial, simply little, common targets.”
Making the Commonwealth podium is hardly a “little” aim. Simmonds admitted the sense of accomplishment felt “unimaginable” however she is already seeking to make the British staff on the 2020 Olympic Video games.
There’s now no extra weight to actually lose however given the main target which has introduced her this far, reaching the sporting carnival in Tokyo two years from now can be one other flip in Simmonds’ transformation.